Can Coffee Make Those Stubborn Wood Scratches Disappear? Here's What We Know

If you own wood furniture, you know it's not uncommon for it to develop unsightly scratches from regular use. Whether your dining table, coffee table, or other piece of furniture is starting to show some wear and tear, there are ways to undo the damage and improve its appearance. You can make stubborn wood scratches disappear with a simple item you probably have in your home: coffee. 

You may be surprised to learn that coffee works well for removing scuff marks and scratches and helping your wooden furniture look new again. Coffee is an ingredient that can naturally stain wood, but it can also help fill in any visible scratches that are present. However, there is a caveat. Remember that you should only use coffee to erase scratches from dark, espresso-colored wooden surfaces rather than from lighter-colored wooden furniture. The coffee's color will blend well with a darker surface but may not help you achieve the desired results if the wood has too light of a tone.

How to use coffee to erase wood scratches

If you need to fix nicks on your coffee table or another piece of wood furniture, start by making a paste. To do this, mix a tablespoon of coffee grounds with a small amount of warm water. Then, you can rub the paste over a scratch with a clean rag to fill it in. For lighter scratches, you can use a Q-tip to apply the paste. Keep in mind that you may need to apply the paste to the wood scratch more than once for it to work effectively. Once you're done, you can wipe the excess paste away with a towel or rag.

As an alternative to creating this paste, you can also simply use brewed coffee to fill in the scratch instead. However, you'll want to make the coffee especially strong by adding three or four scoops of grounds for every cup of water you use. Remember that it's ideal to use dark roast coffee such as French, Italian, or Viennese roast for this method. The color of these roasts will be a bit darker and will match a darker wood better than a lighter roast.

Alternative solutions for wood scratches

Although using coffee is a great hack for removing wood scratches on dark wood, there are many hacks to easily erase stubborn wood furniture scratches that you may want to try, depending on what ingredients you have in your home. Another common solution is to combine one part olive oil and two parts white vinegar to create a solution. Then, apply it to the wood scratches with a cotton rag, using a circular motion first and then going with the grain. Spot-test the solution first to ensure it works well with your particular wood item.

You may also consider using a simple child's crayon to fill in the scratch. To do this, clean the area, choose an appropriate color, and then draw in the scratch, ensuring the crayon wax gets into the gap. You can swipe away any excess with an object like a credit card. You can also use fine sandpaper to mend the crack, especially for light scratches. Sanding the scratch lightly will help you make the wood look more even. However, make sure to go with the grain to avoid adding new scratches to the wood. Move the sandpaper slowly and gently to prevent damage. Also, consider resealing the wood to protect it once you're done. If this doesn't work for you and your wood furniture has a deeper scratch, you may need to try a coarser sandpaper to get better results.